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Professor of Device Materials, Head of Department

MA University of Cambridge
PhD University of Cambridge

Superconducting and magnetic thin films and devices

My research within the Device Materials Group is built around the deposition, microfabrication and measurement of thin-film heterostructure devices. In particular we apply novel materials and advanced nanofabrication to create new types of functional device.

Superconductor / ferromagnet devices

My main current research activity is foccused on studying the nanoscale interaction of superconductivity and magnetism. In particular, the role of magnetism within the barriers of Josephson junctions. Until about a decade ago, strong ferromagnetism and superconductivity were assumed to be incompatible, so that the presence of ferromagnetic elements within superconducting devices would inevitably destroy the cuperconducting coupling. Over the past few years we have demonstrated a number of ground-breaking results including the demonstration of multiple switchings between the zero- and pi-ground state of junctions containing strong ferromagnet barriers, controlled generation of a triplet proximity effect in a ferromagnet and the first spin filter Josephson junction. These ingredients form the basis for my current ERC Advanced Investigator Grant on superconducting spintronics.

Oxide heterostructures

My work in Cambridge on functional oxides began with studies of the low field magnetoresistance of grain boundaries and tunnel devices in colossal magnetoresistive oxides. Recently, the work has developed into studies of multiferroic materials and ferromagnetic insulators. The latter form the basis for a current project looking to extend my work on spin filter Josephson junctions into oxide heterostructures. I am also working on novel oxide superconductors and interested in both means by which the critical temperature can be enhanced and generating unconventional superconducting states in oxide materials.

A device fabricated by 3-D focused ion beam milling used to measure the spin diffusion length of electrons in copper
  • A. Pal, Z. H. Barber, J. W. A. Robinson, and M. G. Blamire, "Pure second harmonic current-phase relation in spin-filter Josephson junctions", Nat. Commun. 5, 3340 (2014).
  • N. Banerjee, C. B. Smiet, R. G. J. Smits, A. Ozaeta, F. S. Bergeret, M. G. Blamire, and J. W. A. Robinson, "Evidence for spin selectivity of triplet pairs in superconducting spin valves", Nat. Commun. 5, 3048 (2014).
  • K. Senapati, M. G. Blamire, and Z. H. Barber, "Spin-filter Josephson junctions", Nature Mater. 10, 849 (2011).
  • J. W. A. Robinson, J. D. S. Witt, and M. G. Blamire, "Controlled Injection of Spin-Triplet Supercurrents into a Strong Ferromagnet", Science 329, 59 (2010).